PKI 6/7/04...Great Day

Associated parks:
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Thursday, June 10, 2004 2:37 PM
Well, I would like to start my trip report with a thank you to some of the people here on this site. I took the advice of going to the back of the park first which turned out to be key in getting started. I went with my brother and two uncles.

Anyway, we went to ride TR:TR. I had never been on this ride. There was virtually no wait and we waited only one cycle. I have to say that I was impressed with the theming throughout the ride. My only complaint would be that I thought that it was going to do a lot more than what happened. Although, now, I would have to disagree with some that it would be a huge deal to lengthen the program. I would have to give this ride an A minus.

Next, we walked directly onto the Beast. Even after 25 years of terrorizing park goers, this is by far my favorite coaster in the park. Since the line was so short, we decided before we even got our first ride, that we would get right back in line and do it again. I have to say, after all of my years of riding the Beast, these two back to back rides were about as smooth as glass. And, I never thought I would say that. Still the #1 wood coaster in the world in my book.

After that, we headed for Coney Mall and Flight of Fear. This also was a walk on. I managed two rides on this one twice. I could be wrong, but I thought it felt like it had become rougher this year. I bought an on-ride photo because I have been working on a collection of coaster photos. Still, FOF is a sweet ride and I quickly found out if you ride a bit defensively, it is not so bad. This seemed to be the theme of the day...ride defensively.

When we exited FOF, we decided to head over to the Racers which had a zero wait. My uncles rode forward, and my brother and I rode backwards as he wanted to ride in the back seat since he had never done this. You know, I have been riding this one even longer than the Beast and it still has great air time.

Next, we headed over to the Action Zone. One of my uncles did not want to ride Delirium, so he waited for the rest of us at the exit. We waited about two to three ride cycles which was not very long at all. When we were ready to load, a ride op pulled my brother aside as she wanted to measure him to make sure that he was not too tall to ride. Warning, if you are 6' 4", you may be told that you are too big to ride, even though my brother had been on it last year. He was a bit PO'd but got over it. Another warning...if you have not been on Delirium, you just about need to empty your pockets before riding. It crushed my sunglasses and squeezed about a half of a tube of sunblock into my side pocket. This was my first ride on Delirium and I have to say that this ride blows TR:TR out of the water. I was truly nervous to ride this one. I was extremely pleased with the experience....it gets an A++.

Now, it was on to Son of Beast. What made this trip even more special was the fact that my uncles had not been since Paramount took over, so there were several rides that were new to them. They did both comment on how they did not like the constant movie music that seemed to be playing all day long. I didn't care for it either. In my opinion, SOB has not improved in the least since last year. I usually don't have any complaints about this coaster, but it shook me to death. I honestly felt like I needed a catscan or MRI afterwards. I must not have disliked it too much as I wound up with three trips on it. I did, however, notice the main problem with SOB. There is way too much shuffling left to right of the trains. This was clearly visible from the middle of the train when I looked at the front car. Otherwise, I still liked it pretty well.

After that, we headed over to Top Gun. Still a pretty good suspended coaster except for the fact that it was too short. I did notice that it seemed that the theming was pretty much back in order.

When we left TG, we went to the Drop Zone stunt tower. I was apprehensive about riding it as I had been on it once and was simply terrified by the whole experience. This was a good time though because I was the only one in our group that had been on it. As we ascended over the bungee tower, my brother looked over at me and seriously asked, aren't we to the top yet? Why don't you look and see. I said,"Hell no!", "look yourself. Then there was the moment of stillness before they drop you. I think what scares me about this ride it reminds me of an elevator just falling. Can't stand that feeling, and the height bothers me as well. Funny, I can ride any coaster of any height and it does not bother me. But, put ,me on a freefall ride and I am holding on for dear life. I was glad when the ride was over. This was probably our longest wait of the day.

Next, we hit Face/Off. I love this ride. It was kind of a new experience for me as I had always rode this one in the front or back of the train. We rode so that we all faced eachother. I enjoyed seeing the expression on my uncles' face when we ascended the tower to start...priceless. Even though it is a short ride, I feel that it is very intense. After that, one of my uncles and I decided to catch a ride on Congo Falls. He had forgotten about the little bump on the way down which lifts you out of your seat a little. We didn't get too wet as we had only about 4-6 of us in our boat. This ride was pretty much empty the whole day.

Finally, we hit the Vortex. After 17 years, this ride still kicks butt. I took some advice on this one and rode it defensively which made for a better ride. I still love Vortex because it still has that gut wrenching first drop. Still a winner in my book.

I won't go any further with my report since everything else was just a repeat of what we had done before, with the exception of the last ride of our day. We rode SOB last and my brother wanted to ride back to back since the line was so short. Well, while our uncles waited on us, they decided to go on the bungee tower. They loved it so much that they bought a video and photo to commemorate the experience. I did discover that some by riding in a seat in the middle of the car as opposed to over top of a wheel helped greatly. We didn't do this on our last ride and I paid dearly for it. I have never had the restraint bar hit me in the gut so many time. It literally felt like I was punched in the stomach. We shopped a little at the end and was pleasantly surprised to find the unofficial Guidebook to PKI by Charles Infosino, AKA Italian Chef. We wound up leaving at 7:15 pm as we had enough. I told them that I didn't care to leave early so we could make it home at a decent time. If we had been all day and only been on everything once, I would have wanted to stay. But, since we had such a great day and had squeezed in 16 rides before 7:00, I felt like I already got my money's worth.

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Friday, June 11, 2004 4:07 PM
Excellent TR Dragster Freak! I'm heading to PKI in about a week and I'm very excited. Last time we started from the front of the park and every ride had a long wait, so I'll try out your method. Does it really make that big of a difference? Anyways, all the rides seem like they're running pretty good so thanks for getting me pumped up!
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Monday, June 14, 2004 10:00 AM
I thought that it made a huge difference! We waited one cycle for Tomb Raider and we practically walked on to the Beast. As a matter of fact, the Beast was so slow, we decided to immediately get back on.
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